We’ve been extremely busy in the past month. We’ve jump-started several projects, moved houses, wrote and designed a ton of things, started Aphelion’s playtests, set the ground for a couple of exciting new things, drew some plants, and cleared out a part of the garden. Not that the last one has any bearing on you, but it’s definitely keeping me happy and grounded.
Jakub is working on updating the alpha rules. We’ve had the first playtest already, and I have to admit, the core mechanics work like a charm! They cover social interactions, sneaking, hacking, combat – it’s all equally easy-to-learn but complex enough to motivate the players to employ tactics and thinking.
And the game comes complete with an interface. Yes, it’s a thing, and it saves a ton of time on tracking resources. And there are no hit points. It’s all sleek and glorious.
See the playtest here!
Jakub is now fleshing out the character creation – which is going to be a minigame all of its own! A narrative-based step-by-step process, establishing your character’s aspirations, background, attributes, skills, and resources. At the end of it, you’ll have a ready-to-play character with all the stats, backstory, and connections you will need to start the game. And it shouldn’t take you more than 15-30 minutes!
My flagship is sailing. Far and wide. If it’s the first time you’re hearing about it, it’s a system-agnostic book on real-world magical plants, thought as an in-world guide for players, game masters, and characters. I write more about it on the project page.
I’ve been more writing than drawing lately (arthritis flaring up messes up the drawing process a bit) but I’m making progress and getting the hang of the digital watercolors. They are so much fun to use! I could never find enough patience to get properly into conventional painting but the digital seems to be working for me.
We have a Patreon now, and in early July our Patrons will get some more plant spreads from the book, as well as a second set of collectible reference cards. Here’s a sample of what they got in June!
In more news, I even got a publisher! Thanks to Exalted Funeral, Herbalist’s Primer is gonna have a professionally handled Kickstarter, print and distribution. It’s happening, y’all!
Incitatus is done! Or its first draft, at least. Jakub’s working on the second draft (and is, apparently, about 50% in), and then it’s pitch time! If you want to read this space horror ahead of time, I’d suggest joining our Patreon this month. You’ll be up for a treat! Megacorps, ghost ships, intrigue, biodrones, mercenaries, and a mummy that’s definitely not looking like a human.
Also, look at this absolutely glorious cover art by Holly Humphries.
I love Project Aphelion mechanics so much, I’m making a fantasy hack of it. Yes, Jakub is going to make his fantasy game but I need a generic fantasy ruleset to live my life to the fullest. With more things to do in a game than just go through combat encounters.
And this is all I’m gonna show you for now.
Graphic-design-wise, I’m working on a cool project with Hydra Cooperative, and I’ll let them dictate what I can say about the subject:
It’s an awesome project, and I can’t wait to actually play in the Hill Cantons.
There’s a couple of really exciting projects I’m on as a graphic designer too but I can’t tell you about them yet. But I will. SOON.
Jakub is writing a ton of things for Earthdawn, RPG Kitchen, and some secret projects – and we’ll share the details as soon as we can. But it’s all hush-hush for now.
We’ve bought a house, y’all! This was probably the busiest we’ve been, finding the time to work between house-hunting, childcare (two preschoolers!), the move, some medical issues (I got officially diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis and started the chemo treatment, so I’m no longer in pain 24/7)…
But hey. Look at my home office view now.
I need to cut down that spruce at some point.
We’re looking at quickly approaching July with hope for some quieter time. It will not be quieter, though, as we’re soon to get back to our Shadowrun campaign, and the Aphelion playtests, and book writing, and design, and gardening, and new secret projects…
But busy is good. We like busy, as long as it leaves enough time for a coffee break.